GE Stock is having a great week. Thanks Airbus.


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GE stock could benefit from an increase in commercial air travel.

Luke Sharrett / Bloomberg

General Electric’s stock is having a very good week, up about 6%. There isn’t much news from


specifically, however. Investors, on the contrary, watch the news from commercial aircraft manufacturers.

GE stock closed Thursday at $ 14.35, a 52-week high closing price. On an intraday basis, the last 52-week high for General Electric shares (ticker: GE) came on March 9 at $ 14.42, but the shares closed at $ 14 on that day.

Improving commercial aerospace activity appears to be the reason for the recent gains. Thursday,


(AIR.France) has announced its intention to increase production of its A320 family of jets. The European cell assembler has said it will build 45 jets per month by the end of 2021, up from around 40 jets per month currently.

The big news for GE, however, is Airbus’ goal of building 64 jets per month by 2023. That’s a big increase, and it indicates that Airbus believes commercial air traffic will continue to recover. Air traffic in the United States, over the past week, is still down about 30% from pre-pandemic levels in 2019. But it’s actually an improvement over the past few months, and traffic is up about 480% year over year.

GE manufactures engines for the A320 and


(BA) 737 jet families through its CFM joint venture with Safran (SAF.France). Safran shares also posted gains, up around 3% for the week and trading just below a 52-week high.

Boeing is also looking to ramp up production rates for the 737 MAX in the coming months, while supplying some of the MAX inventory that was built while this aircraft was grounded around the world between March 2019 and December 2020.

The increased production of Airbus and Boeing helps far more than GE and Safran; all aerospace suppliers benefit from it. Actions of

Raytheon Technologies


Honeywell International

(HON) and Woodward (WWD), for example, are all up around 3% to 4% this week. the

S&P 500

is up about 1.4%.

Shares of GE slipped about 2% in trading on Friday, giving back some of the weekly gains. the

Dow Jones Industrial Average

and the S&P 500 were both up about 0.2% in midday trading.

Year-to-date, GE stock has gained around 31%, better than comparable gains across the market.

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